9pm WATCH: Six weeks jail for Murdoch foam pie thrower‬

Matthew Sinclair 6.45pm On Comment, round three of the debate about emissions and taxes.  Matthew Sinclair replies to Robert McIlveen -  "The carbon floor price is a bad policy It isn't quite as awful as the feed-in tariff but then we weren't offered a choice between the two.  We have both and I'm arguing for neither."

5.45pm Andrew Lilico on Comment: My view of the death penalty

3.45pm LeftWatch: False Economy, false conclusions.  A left-wing research group complains about cuts to charities…but Labour Councils turn out be taking the lead in wielding the axe.

Noon ConHomeUSA:  Today's U.S political highlights

10.30am Robert McIlveen on Comment: Don’t axe this tax, the carbon floor price is the best of a very variable bunch

ToryDiary: The buoyant popularity of William Hague

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Lord Ashcroft on Comment: Crimestoppers launches new campaign to hunt the UK's ten most wanted fraudsters

John Moss on Local Government: A stable housing market requires more equity, less debt and fewer owner-occupiers

WATCH: U.S House approves debt deal

The IMF's latest verdict: Stay the course, George – it's the right thing to do…

Screen shot 2011-08-02 at 07.53.17 "The International Monetary Fund said that the recovery has ‘stalled’, inflation ‘remains elevated’, and unemployment ‘is still unacceptably high’ in a bleak report on the UK. It said the Chancellor should cut taxes temporarily and the Bank of England print more money to stimulate growth if the weakness persists. But it said the ‘most likely’ outcome was that the economy will ‘gradually recover’ and added: ‘For now, staying the course seems the right thing to do.’" – Daily Mail

…But the Chancellor may miss his borrowing targets, causing tighter spending and higher taxes still…

"The IMF judged that Britain’s economy had less capacity to grow quickly over the next few years than the government had hoped, slowing the reduction in borrowing to the point where it comes within a whisker of missing George Osborne’s main fiscal target.  Instead of eliminating his preferred measure of the deficit with billions to spare a year before the next election..The IMF mission chief to the UK warned that the chancellor’s “mandate is met with a very slim margin”, raising the possibility that further spending cuts and tax rises would be needed." – Financial Times (£)

…And families will be £1,500 a year worse off

"In a comprehensive analysis of the state of the British economy, the economic watchdog said that, between them, families would have £35 billion less disposable income due to the Government’s attempts to tackle the deficit. In addition, a fall in the value of houses would wipe off more than a tenth of their “tangible” wealth in real terms by 2016, the IMF said in its report.  The forecast for household finances came amid a growing political row about recent slow growth." – Daily Telegraph

Osborne warns banks to lend to businesses

"The Chancellor said the banks had an ‘economic obligation’ to lend to cash-strapped businesses and warned them that the Government ‘will not tolerate banks piling the pressure’ on small firms. He hinted that they could be hit with legally-binding lending targets if they decide to pour cash into obscene bonuses for bankers rather than injecting money into struggling firms." – Daily Mail

"The Coalition government proposes to keep taxes at the highest levels of the last fifty years for the five year Parliament." John Redwood's Blog

Cable promises Norton loan will put exports in the fast laneThe Independent

Alexander throws mountain rescue teams a £200,000 funding lifeline Scotsman

The coalition see-saw tips to the Lib Dems – Rachel Sylvester, The Times (£)

Amy Winehouse's father meets Brokenshire to discuss "Amy rehab centre"

Screen shot 2011-08-02 at 07.59.30 "Plans by the family of Amy Winehouse to set up a rehabilitation centre in her name were given a boost after meetings between the late singer’s father, ministers and MPs. Mitch Winehouse met with James Brokenshire, the Crime Minister, to discuss the way that government funds to help addicts are spent, and whether more should be allocated to residential rehabilitation treatment to help people come off drugs altogether." – The Times (£)

MPs fear an influx of TurksDaily Express

May accused of delaying overhaul of gun laws…

"The Home Secretary was accused last night of resisting calls to tighten gun laws following the shooting spree of Derrick Bird in which 12 people were murdered. A report by MPs more than seven months ago denounced the legislation in England and Wales as a "complex and confused" mess…Ms May is yet to respond to demand for action by the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee, prompting charges by gun law campaigners that she is dragging her feet on an urgent issue." – The Independent

…As she tells the police to pay more into their pensions

"More senior officers will have to pay up to £2,800 extra a year, under the Home Office proposals. The Home Secretary, told the police service there must be a “fairer balance” between what public sector employees pay and what the taxpayer contributes. But she insisted the police pension scheme still remains “very attractive” compared with private sector schemes. Overall, police officers will see their annual pension contributions increase by between 1.5 per cent and four per cent by 2015, depending on rank or length of service." – Daily Telegraph

Sats results fuel calls for school test reformDaily Telegraph

Cable to back private digital copying

"Vince Cable, business secretary, will on Wednesday move to legitimise the “ripping” of digital copies of music and movies from discs for personal use and other copyright exceptions, following recommendations in the Hargreaves review of intellectual property. Another proposed copyright exception backed by the government will make it easier for scientists to mine existing electronic journals to make discoveries." – Financial Times (£)

Former Labour MP Jim Devine released from prison just a quarter of the way through his sentence for cheating on expenses Daily Mail

Ottoway advises: Talk to Gaddafi…

Screen shot 2011-08-02 at 08.07.27 "The Chairman of the House of Commons’ powerful Foreign Affairs Select Committee said the Government was right to start downplaying expectations of a decisive breakthrough. ‘We are in a stalemate situation and there’s no obvious way of getting ourselves out of it,’ he told the Daily Mail. ‘We have got to try to tighten the political, economic and military campaign, but I think in the end it will require some kind of dialogue with the Gaddafi regime.’ – Daily Mail

…As Hague says: No force against Syria…

"Military action against Syria is not even a remote possibility despite growing international pressure, Foreign Secretary William Hague said yesterday. But Downing Street said President Bashar Assad was “losing legitimacy and should reform or step aside”. As the EU stepped up sanctions against the country’s leaders with asset freezing and travel bans, an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council was taking place in New York last night." – Daily Express

…And he refuses to put a timeline on operations in Libya

"William Hague played down hopes of an early end to the Libyan conflict yesterday as he warned that the military campaign was not a computer game that could be switched off.  More than four months after Britain joined bombing raids on Muammar Gaddafi's forces, remarks by the Foreign Secretary echoed efforts by senior ministers to tone down earlier government rhetoric forecasting the Libyan dictator's imminent defeat." – The Independent

Yesterday on ConservativeHome:

Israel "ready to negotiate borders with Palestinians"Daily Telegraph

Miliband brings in former ITV chief to review Labour structures

"Charles Allen, the former chief executive of ITV and chairman of EMI, is to oversee a management and commercial review of the Labour party as Ed Miliband moves to underline his pro-business credentials. The Labour leader said that Allen, a longstanding supporter, will bring huge experience to the rebuilding of the party. The appointment of Allen…is the second significant appointment by Miliband in recent weeks after the arrival of Iain McNichol, the former GMB national policy officer, as general secretary." – The Guardian

Unions "ganged up" on Miliband to defeat his choice for key job – The Times (£)

Sajid Javid: Three reasons why the 50p rate should go

Screen shot 2011-08-02 at 08.22.11 "First, all empirical evidence on the relationship between tax rates and tax revenues shows that, after a certain point, tax cuts lead to higher revenues…Second, the 50p rate makes the UK extremely uncompetitive for high earners…Third, scrapping the top tax rate will provide an immediate boost to economic growth…It will take courage to scrap the 50p tax rate. But given the tough, but necessary, economic decisions the coalition government has already made, I am personally convinced that the right decision will be made." – Sajid Javid, City A.M

US set for debt deal after vote victory Financial Times (£)

I doubt that a credit downgrade would be disastrous for America – Piotr Brzezinksi, The Economist

SDLP leader Margaret Ritchie faces leadership challenge from deputy Patsy McGloneBelfast Telegraph

Citizens Advice Bureaux across England facing closureThe Independent

David Davies MP presses "three strikes and you're out" for Wales Wales Online

News International ordered mass deletion of emails nine timesThe Guardian

Don’t boast, Mr Maude. You’ve barely started – Peter Hoskin, The Times (£)

Cameron will take second summer holidayDaily Telegraph

And finally…PMQs, the computer game

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"Prime Minister's Questions: the Game, available for download by Windows users, sees gamers assume the persona of David Cameron in a deadly battle of wits with Ed Miliband. They're both drawn with retro, arcade-style pixels, and kept in check by the burbles of speaker John Bercow…Cameron has the option of four formulaic replies. Blame Labour – "the last government maxed out this country's credit card" – or invoke the national interest: it's your call. Pick the right response, and Miliband loses "health" points. Pick the wrong one, and Cameron takes the hit." – The Guardian




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